Saturday, May 14, 2016

Our Dreams--and God's Plans--by Linden Malki

"A man's mind plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps." (Proverbs 16:9) We human beings usually have some idea of what we want, but God has His own idea of how to get us where He wants us.

I recall having had several different possible ambitions growing up, which gave me a guide for classes, etc; fortunately, they all led in the same general direction, and all turned out to be appropriate for where I did end up. About halfway through college, I realized that I really didn't know what I wanted long-term, but was led to the realization that if I took as many opportunities as I had available to learn as much as I could about anything that interested me, I would probably be reasonably prepared for whatever doors that God opened for me. When I was home in Spokane that summer, I decided to check on summer school classes at Gonzaga University, not far from where we lived. As it turned out, there was a French literature class and a mathematical logic class, both which were suitable followups to classes I had just completed. They were a bit surprised to find a strange girl who wasn't a teaching nun from the local Catholic schools show up in the classes, but my guardian angels were on the job and I learned a lot that I still remember. I graduated with what I have called a "non-directional" degree, and in the next year and a half, all the things I thought I might do didn't work out, and God and my family took me places I could not have imagined--winding up in San Bernardino, and Calvary Baptist Church. And I found myself being thankful for all the things I had learned without knowing why, other than my own curiosity. One of my kids decided in Jr high school that he didn't want to do his history homework because he couldn't see the point; if he ever needed it he could learn it then. I explained to him that the time to learn something is before you need it; on the spot usually doesn't get you where you need to be. (Yes, he has learned it.)

I have learned that I can analyze; I can dream, I can design, I can run scenarios in my head. But what I really need to do is pray for His vision; and for the discernment to recognize the fulfillment of the vision when it appears. I am literally eternally grateful for the places God has put me, and the people He put in my life; and appreciate the opportunities He has given me to be His servant.

Again, the wisdom of the Proverbs says it well: "There are many plans in a man’s heart, Nevertheless the Lord’s counsel-- that will stand." (Proverbs 19:21)

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